Air is something so common that we don’t really give much thought to how it’s used unless it’s the type of air that will hurt us. However, compressed air has a variety of surprising and practical uses that make our modern lives easier, as well as a little more interesting.
There’s a reason air compressor equipment is so common in industrial settings, too. They’re used in a variety of applications, including paint, power tools, or even the operation of heavy machinery. But there are more uses for compressed air that can affect our daily lives. Here are some of them:
The modern fridge owes much of its ability to cool things to the vortex tube, a device responsible for separating gas into hot and cold streams. With compressed air, it becomes easier to cool objects while simultaneously ejecting hot air with the correct device and system. This is also used in mechanical shops to cool down power tools.
Probably one of the more common uses of compressed air is in airsoft and paintball guns. Since real (and dangerous) guns primarily use gunpowder as an ignition for bullets to fire, paintball guns and pellet guns often use a system of compressed air and springs to fire. They’re easily “reloaded” this way, and the sport becomes safer for everyone involved.
Another use of compressed air is in the braking systems of most trains, as relying on a purely mechanical way of stopping a train can cause massive damage to its internal systems. Air can deliver as much force as any mechanical handbrake if applied correctly in a pressurized environment, which is why you’ll often see valves close to a train’s wheels.
Compressed air is also the reason people can breathe underwater and stay afloat. Most buoyancy devices use a special mixture of gases and air compressed into a container in order to get the right mixture for someone (or something) to stay afloat. Alternatively, a special mixture of air is often loaded into air tanks that divers use to breathe, as it’s easier to store and refill that way.
Construction and household tools
You might have seen a little bit of compressed air and gas in action when it comes to the burners that you use to heat up a barbecue of the pneumatic drill. Both of these, while vastly different in purpose and design, use a compressed air system to perform their functions. Even a turkey baster uses compressed air.
Since air interacts with pressure, you can achieve positive results from it. There’s a lot of uses for compressed air that you may not be aware of, and more applications are being discovered every day. It might not be long before you need compressed air for anything that you need to do at home or in the workplace. The key is to understand the application or the job that requires compressed air and then get a system that will meet the requirements of the job at hand.